Employment Related Matters
Members with an employment-related issue should first contact their UniServ Director. If UniServ Directors determine that legal assistance is needed they contact the Legal Department. WEAC has lawyers experienced at effectively defending and protecting the rights of members in the workplace. Although the Legal Department’s primary mission is to assist UniServ Directors in the protection of member employment rights, the Legal Department has also successfully litigated many cases of substantial benefit to individual members and the education profession.
WEAC has successfully defended, in arbitration and administrative hearings, many members who have been unjustly accused of professional misconduct or incompetence. The Legal Department’s strong record of success requires school districts to carefully weigh their options before proceeding against members.
The Legal Department has been instrumental in waging and winning a number of Wisconsin Supreme Court cases that benefit members, students, schools, and retirees. The Legal Department also spends considerable time and effort preventing and resolving labor disputes so that members’ interests can be advanced without litigation.
WEAC provides Association Liability Insurance to cover officers and NEA state and local affiliate employees for certain claims and suits arising out of their association-related activities.
The Educators Employment Liability Insurance Program reimburses attorney fees and other legal costs up to $35,000 for members who are falsely accused and/or charged with violating a criminal statute in the course of their employment if no charges are brought or if they are exonerated of all charges. This program may also provide coverage for civil proceedings brought against members for claims arising out of the course of their employment.
There is no additional fee to members for either insurance.
Personal Legal Matters
The NEA/WEAC Attorney Referral program was designed to provide members with access to affordable legal advice for certain non-employment related areas. The areas of coverage include: wills and estates, real estate, domestic relations, consumer protection and traffic violations. This link also contains a list of participating attorneys who are located throughout the state.
SUMMARY OF LEGAL PROTECTIONS:
WEAC Will Provide Legal Advice And/Or Representation Regarding:
- Non-renewal, termination, discipline and workplace safety issues
- Discrimination or harassment based upon race, gender, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, religion, nationality or pregnancy
- State and federal family medical leave laws
- Disputes under the personnel records, open records and open meetings laws
- Individual employment contracts
- Rights under the Municipal Employment Relations Act including retaliation for engaging in union activities
- Wage and hour laws
- Unemployment compensation
- Dealing with violent special education students
- Reporting child abuse and neglect
- Enforcement of vested employment benefits